It is understandable that you might be feeling anxious and worried about coronavirus and that it could be affecting your mental health. You might be struggling with the idea of new safety measures or loneliness because of these. You might be stressed about your job and finances. For those with an existing mental health condition, such as anxiety, depression or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), this might be a particularly difficult time.
It has never been more important for each of us to think and talk more about mental health and wellbeing, and to seek support when needed. In London, there are a range of free resources, online tools, and helplines available to help you cope and stay mentally healthy.
You should know that even though things can feel very hard at times, support is available for whatever you are going through.
Simple ways to improve your wellbeing
Doctors of the World, in partnership with Thrive London, have put together a list of little things you can do to keep yourself well and some useful ways to get support if you are finding it hard. The guidance is available in English and 26 other languages to support migrant communities.
If you’re feeling anxious or stressed about work, housing or financial difficulties, then explore the helpful range of resources and guidance on City Hall's Hub.
Available support now - online tools to help your mental health
The NHS approved digital mental wellbeing service, Good Thinking, promotes proactive self-care for the four most common mental health conditions: anxiety, low mood, sleeping difficulties and stress. Take the clinically validated self-assessment tool to get a better understanding of what you’re going through, helpful resources and if necessary, relevant treatment options.
To help build resilience and maintain good wellbeing, there’s a range of resources for everyone at Every Mind Matters. Including an interactive quiz, the Your Mind Plan, to get top tips and advice relevant for you.
NHS wellbeing webinars
A collection of NHS Coping Well During Covid webinars are available if you are feeling anxious about coronavirus and how it is impacting you, your loved ones or your work. The 60-minute sessions will guide you through ideas and tools to support your mental health and wellbeing in an evidenced based and interactive way.
The webinar topics include managing wellbeing, anxiety, low mood, sleeping difficulties, and mindfulness. Additionally, there are also specific webinars on:
- Working from home and staying well – aimed at helping you consider the challenges created by home working, helping you to find a better home working life balance, enabling you to find it easier to separate working from home life.
- Managing financial anxiety – delivered in partnership with Money A&E and Mental Health and Money Advice, this webinar provides you with some really practical advice to support you with your financial concerns as well as some strategies to manage your wellbeing.
- BAME Wellbeing – delivered in partnership with David Truswell, this webinar considers the challenges Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities face and some techniques and strategies to support wellbeing now and as lockdown restrictions ease.
NHS psychological treatments
If you do not require urgent support but are still concerned about your mental health, contacting your GP is a good place to start.
You can also refer yourself for free, non-urgent NHS psychological therapy (IAPT) services which provide evidence-based treatments for depression and anxiety. These services are open in London if you feel like you may need further, professional support.
Getting urgent help for mental health
A mental health emergency should be taken as seriously as a physical one. You will not be wasting anyone's time. If you have an existing mental health condition and an assigned care team or care worker, then it’s important to contact them.
The Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust (BEH-MHT) crisis telephone line is open 24/7. You can call them on 0800 151 0023.
The Samaritans are here to listen at any time of the day or night. You can talk to them about anything that's troubling you, no matter how difficult. Call free on 116 123
Shout crisis text support
Cruse bereavement charity
The bereavement care charity Cruse is helping families affected by coronavirus. Call free on 0808 808 1677